Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Gomez - We Haven't Turned Around - way back review

Every now and again I'm going to review an album or song from a good while back. Some of these will be pulled from old reviews I did, some will be new, as the mood strikes me. This is the first from this series, and is pulled from a full album review of Liquid Skin by Gomez I did several years ago.

We Haven't Turned Around is a truly, breathtakingly, hauntingly, beautiful song. This is one of those songs where everything about it is absolutely perfect. Usually a song can delve in to useless schlog with the addition of a cello. Generally, its just a sellout move and only serves to detract from the song. But occasionally, on a truly beautiful song, it makes the song. And that's the case here.

Quite possibly if Ben Ottwell was born to sing a single song, it was this song. Its never clear exactly what the lyrics are about, but they fit so perfectly with the mood of the song that it doesn't really matter. The lyrics aren't there to tell a story, they're there to convey pure emotion and they do that perfectly. A lot of bands would have opted for more underwhelming percussion on such a beautiful song, but Gomez rightly let Olly do his thing and it paid off with beautfully complimentary drum lines that interact just right with the rest of the instruments and the song as a whole.

Musical moments just don't come much better than the crashing return to the chorus at 3:47. You wouldn't think that a heavily distorted guitar could fit so well, but it just does. There are a lot of elements about this song that should be too over the top or that just don't fit, but amazingly everything is just right. For a band that self-produced this album, the fact that everything is just perfect is a true testimony to their talent.

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